Saturday, June 26, 2010

Summer reading for the kid

What do you do with a 10 year old voracious reader?? Of course- as a Mom- you're thrilled. It can be challenging tho, when she's read so much that is age appropriate already - and finds many books in her words "too little" for her. She's devoured Harry Potter already a year ago. The Penderwicks were visited both on summer vacation and at Gardam Street. She's gone up the mountain to meet the moon and Percy Jackson was an affair to remember. Black beauty-Black Stallion anything with a horse has been read. Lately- we've been trolling the library shelves with me encouraging her to try anything... it doesn't have to be a book with "buzz"- it's like discovering treasure!!!But lately... her eyes turn to the YA.

Oy Vey!!! Not yet!- We will get there- -let's just get to middle school ok??? She's a dystopian fiend - put the kid in another reality - wizards- Olympians- EGYPTIAN GODS(yup Mr. Riordan -she's all over the new series) - she eats it up. She read "City of Ember" as part of her "Voyager Program" at school. Really? Wowo- post apocalyptic stuff floats her boat too!?

The school sends home a list- 2/3's of which she's already read. 1/3 of which she considers too little. -So it's the books of Ember so far. We made a trip to the Comic book shop- so we've got all of Bone to go through. She loves graphic novels - I try to keep up on them.

I may start the timeless Judy Blume run of puberty books at the end of the summer- it's about time. -oy vey. I loved those books - so I know where we are headed.....

So any suggestions for an advanced 10 year old reader??? I'm not letting her read Twilight -I'm a big bad mommy who believes in letting kids stay kids for as long as possible - no sexy vampires yet.

I'm open to hearing about the books you loved as an 11 year old.


Lisa M Griffin said...

Yes, Judy Blume is a must. I grew up on her books and also just finished one of her adult books, Summer Girls.
thanks for sharing. ;)

Nina Crittenden said...

Has she read Island of the Blue Dolphins yet? Where the Red Fern Grows is another beautiful book. I loved King of the Wind (horse book). I can't remember how old I was when I read the Nancy Drew books... The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander was suggested by my husband (the whole series is great, he says). The Fablehaven books by Brandon Mull are great also (my husband LOVES books!). I also loved Lad a Dog, by Albert Payson Terhune. Is she too young for Watership Down (maybe not yet)? I just bought The Underneath by Kathi Appelt, it looks really good. I have heard great things about Holes by Louis Sachar, too... Great photo, btw! :)

Kelly Light said...

Thanks Nina- That was very helpful! Holes is on my list- I wrote down all of the others. Watership down is a fantastic massive book- gonna give that a year. Kathi Appelt bought 20 cards from Ripple- whoa!

AutumnLeaves said...

I remember being the same way at her age. In fact, when I was 8, my third grade teacher gave me the two inch thick original "Heidi" to read. I wish I could remember all of the books my own daughters loved to read at that age...The Saddle Club book, Babysitters Club books, The Indian in the Cupboard, of course Judy Blume,...

Kelly Light said...

I am determined to get her to read Little Women if not this summer- next summer. She's gone thru the Saddle Club. I do have a bunch of my old Nany Drew's I can dig out for her

Kelly Light said...

Oh- and her Grandam has that Heidi waiting for her for sleep overs

priscilla said...

She sounds just like my Addie.
Has she read Peter and the Shadowthieves/Starcatchers? The Wright Three,chasing Vermeer and all the Blue Baillet books? Addie was into the Warriors for a while back then. Hoot? Oh, there's a series by Helen Dunmore, Ingo...all about mermaids....Addie adored that series. It seems to be only available in Britian but I ordered them from AmazonUK.
The Secret Garden, The Star of Kazan...she also enjoyed the Mysterious Benedict Society....there are at least two.
Number the Stars, anything by Lois Lowry....Oh I could go on....

shelley said...

A Wind in the Door, and A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L'Engle!! both are such great books. and how about the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder? (i think there are six books) i read those at twelve and was enthralled.

Kelly Light said...

Priscilla- she's continually reading Warriors!_That series is never ending... The Secret garden is an awesomes suggestion-I luv'd that book. Just this morning I said Chasing Vermeer to her... I wrote down the other ones you mentioned! Thanks- we're making a great summer reading list now!

Kelly Light said...

Shelley - A wrinkle in Time!! That was my fave book in 5th grde- how did I miss that?-on the list. Little House- may be a tough sell as was Anne of green gables. I'm gonna keep trying!

Alicia Padrón said...

I have the exact same dilemma than you with my 12 year old. My 8 year old daughter is on the same road but she has tons of books from my oldest to read, so no problem there.

You know what? I am going to tweet about your post, maybe all my writer peeps can help. :o)

I agree with you, no Twilight yet. There will be plenty of time for sexy older novels later. Lot's of that around. Let's keep them enjoying being a 10 or 12 year old for a while. :o)

Michelle Henninger said...

I'm in the same boat with my voracious 8 year old. She's read all the books mentioned, although she's not a huge fan of wizards and such.

If she hasn't read The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, it's a great one. She's currently reading "The Little House" series, The Boxcar children, a little Goosebumps thrown in here and there. She's read most of the Star Wars chapter books, and we just finished "The Witch of Blackbird Pond."

She loved the Classic Starts Series books - especially Tom Sawyer. (Although, we started reading the unabridged Huck Finn, and I thought that was a little too violent and the frequent use of the "n" word was too much for me so I told her I didn't think it was appropriate for her yet. - The Classic Start version might be more age appropriate).

priscilla said...

I'm always looking for suggestions for
Addie......she's made her way through most of the decent YA books....I'm always looking for recommended "classics". You are so much closer to 13/14 than I am kelly, maybe you can remember what you loved then?

Christina Forshay said...

Did you say she's read the Chronicles of Narnia. And when she gets a bit older, don't forget A Tree Grows in Brooklyn--that was one of my absolute favorites.

Kitty said...

I read with my kids every night (10 year old daughter and 8 year old son). We also have read all of the Harry Potters with the exception of the Tales of Beetle the Bard. We are loving the Redwall series currently and are on book 4. Another nice series is Warriors, in which the characters are all cats. Lord of the Rings (don't skip the Hobbit), The Chronicles of Narnia, so many wonderful books to read!

Anonymous said...

1. Nancy Drew
2. Hardy Boys
3. Babysitter's Club
4. A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket
5. Goosebumps

Perhaps a conversation with the librarian might help in the book search of anything new that will be coming in.

Have a great day!

Aja said...

Good for you for avoiding the twilight books. My neice, who is 11, just finished Eclipse, and while I'm thrilled to hear that she's reading such large books, it does make me worry how it will shape her perception of young romance. Sigh.

I have heard excellent things about the His Dark Materials triology (golden compass). Has she given that a shot yet?

Charlotte Cheng said...

I was also an avid reader at 10 and one of my favorite authors was Lloyd Alexander (any of his series but the Cauldron series is a good start). I also recommend Anne of Green Gables and The Tale of Despereaux.

Kelly Light said...

I have created the best list thanks to you guys!!! I knew if I asked - you'd respond- she's got the pages turning already. Thanks!!!

Michaela said...

Absolutely: The Wrinkle in Time Series and Narnia.

Judy Blume might be okay, but I would hold off on "Are You There God? It's Me Margaret." I read that the summer I was ten and it traumatized me. After my babysitter explained what I didn't quite "get" about the puberty aspects of the book, I cried for two days and I spent the next three years terrified I would get my period at school or on a sleep over or something.

I liked The Hobbit, and it is a good one for that age. If she likes it, I guess that rest of the Rings series would be okay, but I found them a little slow when I read them back then.

I read all of the Anne of Green Gables series when I was in 5th grade and I loved those, as well as Little Women, Little Men and Jo's Boys. I read a lot of younger versions of classics too - Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Three Musketeers and Huck Finn. I also liked the Wizard of Oz series.

OH and I loved Jules Verne's stuff - The Time Machine and all those fantastical Victorian novels. Secret Garden was a major fave, and the Little Princess, as well as Rudyard Kipling's stories about India. The Hound of the Baskervilles was one of my favorites also - it creeped me out, but I loved it. Another spooky-ish one I liked was the Bunnicula series by James Howe, but only the first three books. After that they got a little too franchise-y.

I also read Bill Peet's autobiography on a monthly basis. Still do.

I was WAY into the American Girls series, but back then it was only three dolls and they were all historical - more about the books than the toys, so it suited me. Now that they're owned by Mattel and the lovely historical characters have been upstaged by "modern" "girl power" dolls, I don't think I would be as inclined to hand my daughter those.

Of course animal books were big: Call of the Wild, White Fang, The Red Pony, all of Marguerite Henry's horse stories... those were winners. Also survival stories, like My Side of the Mountain and Gary Paulsen's books were interesting to me.

David and the Phoenix by Edward Ormondroyd is WONDERFUL and she should read that if she hasn't yet. And the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Number the Stars and the Giver, also.

One of my all time favorites is Tuck Everlasting, but she'll probably read that in school - same with Bridge to Terabithia.

When she gets a little older make sure she reads The Outsiders, Catcher in the Rye and To Kill a Mockingbird. I read them all the summer between 6th and 7th grade, and though I didn't quite "get" all of it, those books shaped me and helped me through a lot of those lousy teenage times. I kept coming back to them and getting more out of them each time. Especially The Outsiders.

Anyway, I've rambled obsessively enough now.

Kelly Light said...

Hey Michaela-Thanks! She's read a bunch that you mentioned. I will try to get her to read Little Women this summer!!

Tolkien-she's destined to read - I never dug it- not a fantasy nut0but my brother was. mags will devour it I'm sure-but I'll wait 2 years for those. I think they need a bit of a mature attention span.

Judy Blume and I became acquainted at 10- and I needed her cause when I was 11- Aunt Flo came to visit.I suspect the same is true for my Mags.

Thanks for all of the suggestions!!


I was the same way growing up... sadly it got to a point where the books that were actually my level were boring so I reverted back to those younger and more thrilling. Authors just can't write thrilling "adult" fantasy books and the old ones get outdated. They are sophisticated and well written but just because a person grows up it doesn't mean they need to lose their imagination. Though being an aspiring children's book illustrator and occasional writer it helps to keep up to date.

Has she read some of the older young readers like the Sevenwaters Trilogy. I liked it when I was about her age. Discworld or Icewindale?

Kelly Light said...

S-I have heard a lot about Discworld- will check that out!

Casey G. said...

The Grimm Sisters series by Michael Buckley is pretty awesome and newer.

any Bruce Coville, My Teacher is an Alien

Daniel Pinkwater's The Yggyssey and The Neddiad - still need to read them.

The Egypt Game and the Famous Stanley Kidnapping Case by Zilpha Keatley Snyder were among my favorites at her age.

I second Peter and the Starcatcher's, so much fun.

The suggestion of, Sherlock Holmes, I know it's crime, but so light, I loved him when I was 10.

Blythe said...

I don't think anyone mentioned Lloyd Alexander's Chronicles of Prydain.
She might also enjoy McCaffrey's Dragonsinger.
The Moomin by Tove Jansson books might seem a little young for her, but I promise they are not too young for you, the mom.
It's a good time to read Andre Norton's Moon of Three Rings.
Ursula LeGuin's Earthsea--and Very Far Away From Anywhere Else is a perfect YA realistic option. (Fear not, Momma)
She needs to read the real myths, Edith Hamilton's book is good for younger readers.
And one of the most beautiful books, although a little hard to find, Red Moon, Black Mountain by Joy Chant.

Kelly Light said...

Off to the library tomorrow armed w.a 25 book list!! Look out librarian! Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

It may be a little strange seeing this comment, since I'm barely older than your daughter (I'm 13). However, I was browsing the internet for something or other about the Penderwicks (LOVE that book), and I couldn't help noticing this post. I can totally sympathize with your daughter--I read well above my grade level, and as a general thing, I find books meant for my age group "too little" for me as well.
So here are some of my recomendations (most of these I probably read at 11 or 12, so they're totally age appropriate):

1. Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life, by Wendy Mass
2. Chasing Vermeer, by Blue Balliet
3. A Wrinkle in Time (as well as the sequels), by Madeleine L'Engle
4. Rules, by Cynthia Lord
5. So B. It, by Sarah Weeks
6. The Green Glass Sea, by Ellen Klages
7. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, by Ann Brashares. You may want to wait a few years for this one though--it has a fair amount of risque stuff in it.
8. Stargirl and Love, Stargirl, both by Jerry Spinelli. Love, Stargirl (the sequel to the first book) is my favorite.
9. Pretty much anything by Shannon Hale. Princess Academy is probably her most famous. Book of A Thousand Days is really good. I also love the Books of Bayern series, which consists of The Goose Girl, Enna Burning, River Secrets, and Forest Born.

I have read all of these books, and there isn't a single one I haven't loved. I hope this helps keep her well stocked on reading! :)

P.S. You may be aware of this already, but there is a 3rd book in the Penderwick series coming out in May of 2011. It's called the Penderwicks at Point Mouette, and I believe it's available for pre-order on Amazon.